With Sean Payton Back, Should New Orleans Saints Be Considered Super Bowl Contenders in 2013?

By Dan Parzych
(John David Mercer/USA Today Sports)

If there was anything to take away from the New Orleans Saints during the 2012 season, it was how much the team missed head coach Sean Payton–who was suspended the entire year due to the bounty scandal.

Payton was officially reinstated on Wednesday and while he obviously has his regrets about what happened in the past–the coach’s main focus now is preparing the Saints for the 2013 season. With the way things ended last season, New Orleans was hoping for an opportunity to be one of the top contenders in the NFC this past season since they’re hosting Super Bowl XLVII and it would have been nice to play on their own field, but those dreams fell through quick after the team started the season 0-4.

As long as Drew Brees remains healthy, there’s no question New Orleans is always going to be considered one of the top teams in the league and Payton’s absence last season showed how much of an impact it had on this team. The Atlanta Falcons may have been the champions of the NFC South this past season, but don’t be surprised if the Saints bounce back in 2013, now that Payton is back on board.

Forget what happened last season–this New Orleans’ team has what it takes to be one of the most dangerous in the league heading into the off-season. The weapons are certainly there on offense and if they can figure out a way to improve the defense as well–expect Payton and company to be Super Bowl contenders next season.

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